The Light of the Gospel
1 Therefore, since we have this ministry because we were shown mercy,(A) we do not give up.(B) 2 Instead, we have renounced shameful secret things, not walking(C) in deceit or distorting God’s message,(D) but commending ourselves to every person’s conscience in God’s sight by an open display of the truth.(E) 3 But if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing. 4 In their case, the god of this age(F) has blinded the minds of the unbelievers so they cannot see the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ,(a)(G) who is the image of God.(H) 5 For we are not proclaiming ourselves but Jesus Christ as Lord,(I) and ourselves as your slaves because of Jesus. 6 For God who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,”(J) has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge(K) of God’s glory(L) in the face of Jesus Christ.
Treasure in Clay Jars
7 Now we have this treasure in clay jars, so that this extraordinary power(M) may be from God and not from us. 8 We are pressured in every way but not crushed; we are perplexed but not in despair; 9 we are persecuted but not abandoned; we are struck down but not destroyed. 10 We always carry the death of Jesus(N) in our body, so that the life of Jesus may also be revealed in our body. 11 For we who live are always given over to death(O) because of Jesus, so that Jesus’ life may also be revealed in our mortal flesh. 12 So death works in us, but life in you. 13 And since we have the same spirit of faith in keeping with what is written, I believed, therefore I spoke,(P)(b) we also believe, and therefore speak. 14 We know that the One who raised the Lord Jesus will raise us also with Jesus(Q) and present us with you. 15 Indeed, everything is for your benefit, so that grace, extended through more and more people, may cause thanksgiving(R) to increase to God’s glory.
16 Therefore we do not give up.(S) Even though our outer person is being destroyed, our inner person(T) is being renewed day by day. 17 For our momentary light affliction(c)(U) is producing for us an absolutely incomparable eternal weight of glory.(V) 18 So we do not focus on what is seen,(W) but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.
a. 2 Corinthians 4:4: Or the gospel of the glorious Christ, or the glorious gospel of Christ
b. 2 Corinthians 4:13: Ps 116:10 LXX
c. 2 Corinthians 4:17: See note at 2Co 1:4.
M. 2 Corinthians 4:7: Mark 5:30; Luke 1:35; Luke 6:19; Acts 19:11; 2 Corinthians 13:4; Revelation 11:17